Greetings from Arion Press, the Grabhorn Institute, and M & H Type.

Arion Press

Holiday open house, tours, and sale: Sunday, December 10

A rare opportunity to visit our workshops on a weekend, the Holiday Open House starts at 9 a.m. in the M&H typefoundry and continues from noon to 5 in the Arion Press gallery. Tours are at 1 p.m and 3 p.m. Arion books, prints, and photographs on view include sale items such as Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia, The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, and Virginia Woolf’s Orlando. See the special sale list and the complete list of Arion books in print.

Jane Austen’s Sense & Sensibility with artist Augusta Talbot, December 10, 15, and into 2018

Our celebration of Arion’s special 200th anniversary Jane Austen edition, Sense and Sensibility, continues during our Open House, with an exhibition of Augusta Talbot’s 10 original brilliantly colored collage illustrations with the artist on hand. We repeat this program on Friday December 15, 3:30 to 5:00. The exhibit remains on view through January 2018. Our gallery is open Monday to Friday 9 to 5 and by appointment.

Right: “It was a very awkward moment; Edward seemed to have as great an inclination to walk out of the room again, as to advance farther into it.”

One free year of subscription if you join now

If you have dreamed of Arion subscription, with its standard 30 per cent discounts on new and backlist books, consider this remarkable offer. Read more or contact Chris Dunlap for details, 415-668-2542.

William Kentridge at Arion Press November 7

We were able to show artist William Kentridge our workshops when he was in San Francisco last month to perform in his concert piece Refuse the Hour. Andrew Hoyem took the opportunity to talk with the South African artist about his next Arion Press book, possibly a literary work about World War I. At a reception and dinner here at the Press, collectors such as Bill and Sako Fisher and subscriber Stuart Davidson, who own Kentridge’s Arion Press book The Lulu Plays, were not shy about asking the master of pen and ink to inscribe their copies. Read Leah Garchik’s amusing description of her conversation with Kentridge about his fountain pen.

Kentridge signs The Lulu Plays for collector Sally Fay as journalist Leah Garchik looks on. Kentridge with Arion subscriber Stuart Davidson. Photographs by Blair Prentice.

Hart Crane’s The Bridge with Joel Shapiro greeted with acclaim

Our major fall publication, the unusual scroll format edition of the American classic The Bridge by Hart Crane with woodblock prints with Joel Shapiro was greeted with astonishment and delight when we unveiled (“unrolled”) it at the New York Fine Art Print Fair at the end of October. The New York Review of Books responded by running an excerpt of our introduction by Langdon Hammer in its November 24 online edition, following a feature in the magazine Antiques by critic Elizabeth Pochoda.

At the Yale University Art Gallery, Arion’s The Bridge will be a highlight of the important exhibition “Joel Shapiro: Plaster, Paper, Wood, and Wire,” running from March 2 through June 10. It makes us happy to think of our scroll unrolled in Louis Kahn’s great 1953 building, his first masterpiece.

Arion Press at Harvard with Helen Vendler

After the New York Print Fair, we travelled up to Cambridge for an exhibit and reading at the Harvard English Department honoring Helen Vendler’s contribution to the Arion Press series of poetry books. All thirteen of the editions Professor Vendler had edited, beginning with the 1985 Wallace Stevens with its Jasper Johns frontispiece, were displayed in the Thompson Parlor, thanks to the Houghton Library. Poetry by Elizabeth Bishop, a Harvard faculty member in her last years, in the recent Arion edition was read by Vendler, Andrew Hoyem, and poets Frank Bidart and Peter Sacks. Afterwards, Arion subscriber Judith Ogden Thomson and her husband John Thomson hosted a dinner at their home nearby.

One-to-one match for year-end donations

This December’s donations to the non-profit Grabhorn Institute will be matched dollar for dollar by the Sage Foundation. Join more than 500 individuals and the National Endowment for the Arts to help preserve our one of-a-kind facility for use by future generations. Donate securely online or by check to Grabhorn Institute, 1802 Hays Street, The Presidio, San Francisco, California 94129.

Prints by Kara Walker and Julie Mehretu

Prints are available by two Arion artists who have made big news this fall: Kara Walker and Julie Mehretu. With her September show hailed as a “sensation,” Kara Walker’s work remains a gold standard for collectors. Her lithographs for Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, signed and numbered, are sold in a suite of four at $10,000, together with the bound book containing another 16 lithographs on different scenes from this classic American tale. Arion Subscribers receive a 20 per cent discount on prints.

Julie Mehretu was a looming presence in San Francisco this October when her four large murals were installed at the entrance of the Snoheta redesigned SF Museum of Modern Art, which opened in May. Mehretu’s four hand-colored prints for Arion’s Poetry of Sappho are also in a portfolio priced at $10,000, and differ from the 20 prints bound into the book. Both portfolios must be purchase with a copy of the book ($1,200). The prints are not sold individually.

Bookbinding position open

We welcome applicants for a full-time position in the bookbindery. Experience as a bookbinder or in related crafts is required and will determine the salary level. Please send a CV and cover letter by email or post. Do not phone.


Andrew Hoyem
Diana Ketcham

1802 Hays Street, The Presidio
San Francisco, California 94129-1197
Telephone: 415-668-2542
Fax: 415-668-2550